"There's nobody buying stones so there's nobody digging stones," said Tom Cushman of Allerton Cushman & Co., Sun Valley, Idaho, who left for a six-week buying trip to Madagascar in early July, three days after hearing that gas was back at the pumps.
"I bought a little of this and a little of that-there wasn't that much of anything to buy.The greatest impact on the market is that there's been a break in the pipe, a six-month absence of material."
did come across a source for nice rose quartz-colored morganite, the pink beryl named after wealthy 20th-century financier and gem lover J.P. Morgan.The gem has never been available in massive quantities, but Cushman
said that the find, which comes from a pegmatite in the Fianarantsoa district of south-central Madagascar, looks like a promising source for attractive, gem-quality "peachy" stones that turn pink after exposure to sunlight.
next trip to the island in mid-November, he'll be buying for the upcoming Tucson gem shows.Despite the willy-nilly style of doing business in Madagascar-where miners will strike deals with backers but will then turn around and sell their goods "sideways" to get a better price-Cushman is confident that the market for his
transparent, well-crystallized morganite will come around.
If what Harry Winston is doing is any indication, then Cushman might just be on to something.The venerable Fifth Avenue jeweler has just introduced a more affordable collection called Twelve to Twilight, which includes a cocktail ring with a morganite center-stone paired with chocolate diamond accents.
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